Apple Inc set a Sept. 5 deadline for corporate employees to be in the office at least three days a week, marking its latest attempt to make a comeback after Covid-19 spikes repeatedly delayed its plans.

The company will require employees to work from the office on Tuesdays, Thursdays and a regular third day to be determined by individual teams. This is a shift from Apple’s original plan, which called for in-person work on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays. The company announced the new approach to employees on Monday.

The Cupertino, Calif.-based tech giant has been working to bring its employees back to the office since at least June 2021, when it first announced the three-day policy. But virus outbreaks have forced the company to push back deadlines, putting workers on two days a week. The new policy will first take effect in Silicon Valley and then spread to other offices.

An Apple representative declined to comment on the updated deadline.

Apple is making other adjustments to Covid-19. The new policy comes weeks after the company stopped wearing masks in common office areas. Apple dropped that requirement on individual desks a few months ago.

In June, the company also held an in-person meeting on its campus to watch a developer conference presentation. This was the first time since 2019 and indicates that Apple is getting closer to normal operations.

In Santa Clara County, home to many of Apple’s main offices, the seven-day average and number of new Covid cases per day have dropped since July, but are still well above the Omicron surge earlier in 2022. However, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention eased its guidelines for COVID-19 last week.

The iPhone maker is one of the strictest tech companies when it comes to bringing employees back to the office, which has irked some employees, according to Bloomberg News. Microsoft Corp., Amazon.com Inc., Alphabet Inc’s Google and others have become more open to remote work in recent months.

It’s a busy time for Apple. The company is gearing up for an event in September to announce the iPhone 14 and new watches. It’s also preparing updated Macs and iPads for release later this year.


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